What!!!  How could this be? Aren’t they the same thing?

When you agree to do something, what you agree to do is no longer an expectation, you are fulfilling what you said you would do. You are being forthright and accountable. When you say to yourself and to others that “I am expected to …” you are implying that you “have to,” that someone else is forcing you to do it. Is that really true?

When you say …

  • I have to go to work today.
  • I am supposed to fix the car today.
  • Mary expects me to do her laundry.

… you are being disingenuous if you agreed to go to work, fix the car, and do the laundry.

 Being your word is being accountable, why do you make it sound like you are a slave to someone else’s expectation? Agreements are expectations when you have a “I have to” mindset. The two, three, or four words used before you say something or think about what you’re doing, reveals your mindset.

A blaming victim mindset uses prefaces like:

  • I have to …
  • I should …
  • I am supposed to …
  • I am expected to …

A personal responsibility mindset uses prefaces like:

  • I get to …
  • I am going to …
  • I committed to …
  • I agreed to …

There is honor, self-respect and esteem-building when you keep your word. Why denigrate it by having a negative mindset about it – by saying “I have to …” or by complaining about it. If you no longer want to do what is “expected” stop complaining about it and change your agreement.

You carry the burden of expectations, because you set up the expectations. If you see them as things you agreed to do, they are no longer burdens. And if they still feel like burdens, you are falsely blaming someone for having an expectation of you.  They have that anticipation because you agreed to do it at sometime.

Seeing your life as fulfilling someone else’s expectation is giving them power and control over you. Why do you do it?

  • Is it because you want their approval?
  • Is it that you want to please them?
  • Do you want to be liked by them?

If it is, stop complaining about having to meet the expectations of others. You don’t “have to;” you are choosing to!

So do you now agree that –

Agreements are not expectations and expectations are not agreements.

The BIG question is …

What would need to exist for you to stop seeing all the things you have to do as expectations that other’s have of you?       

When working for your boss are you meeting expectations, or doing what you agreed to do?

When you take a class are you meeting your teacher’s expectations, or doing what you agreed to do?

When you get into a significant relationship or marriage, are you meeting the expectations of your partner, or you doing what you agreed to do?

It doesn’t feel good to your partner when you project or convey that you are doing what is expected by the other person. You are doing what you said you would do. STOP dropping the “I have to because you expect me to” bomb on the other person. It is dishonest, disingenuous, and relationship killing.

– Instead, graciously do what you agreed to do and watch what happens.


Ride The Elephant is available for pre-orders now: https://www.raymckinley.com/my-books/